In January of 2017, UN Special Rapporteur on the Right to Adequate Housing, Lelani Farha; spent time in the San Francisco Bay Area, and Los Angeles to meet with houseless and housed community members. Ms Farha was able to hear and speak directly with people living in
encampments and on our streets about the oppression, hatred and Police violence they experience everyday.
In Ms. Farha’s report she frames the encampments and street dwelling in the United States under the same vein as the informal settlements around the world. Finding that “the scope and severity of the living conditions in informal settlements make this one of the most
pervasive violations of human rights globally (Summary p1 Report).”
The report “Report of the Special Rapporteur on adequate housing as a component of the right to an adequate standard of living, and on the right to non-discrimination in this context” is being presented in New York on October 19 th (In solidarity with this presentation at the UN,
events are planned in New York City; Denver, Colorado, and Oakland, CA October 24).
Writing in support of WRAPs Right to Rest acts in; California, Colorado, and Oregon. The Rapporteur summed up her visit in California thusly; “In my capacity as the UN Rapporteur on
Housing, I visited California and saw firsthand the human right violations being experienced by people who are homeless. They are the victims of failed policies—not the perpetrators of crime. The state of California must take action to remedy the criminalization of rest…While I toured encampments and drop-in facilities serving homeless people, the community repeatedly expressed that they simply wanted to be treated as human beings. It is dehumanizing, demoralizing, and unjust to criminalize hundreds of thousands of people due to their housing status.”
The report concludes with recommendations to enhance the lives of over 800 million people around the world who live in informal settlements and inhumane conditions concluding “That truth is that by any measure — moral, political or legal — it is unacceptable for people to be forced to live this way. Refusing to accept the unacceptable is where we must begin. All actors must mobilize within a shared human rights paradigm around the imperative of upgrading all informal settlements by 2030.”
UN Event in Denver http://unadenver.org
What: UN Day, the Right to Housing, a Conversation
By: United Nations Association, Denver
Where: Posner Center 1031 33rd st, Denver CO
When: Wednesday October 24th, 6pm
Cost: 10$ ahead, 15$ at the door
Denver Homeless Out Loud, 720-940-5291 firstname.lastname@example.org